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Asset Management Plan
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 Letter from the Minister of Transportation
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 Where Have All the Litter Containers Gone ?
 Ontario Health Depends on Hiring More RNs
 Balanced Federal Budget

I would first like to say that I have read the 180 pages for this report and can save you the trouble of reading it and say that there is nothing here that past and present councils or staff did not know. This is another product of a requirement from the provincial government.

This plan had to be filed with them by the end of 2013. All the information in it was already available from staff; they just created 180 pages of real neat graphs and pie charts and spread sheets to impress. The provincial government requires these things for grant purposes. BUT NOW what this does do is when staff are doing budget deliberations, they can say to council "LOOK what the experts say", and when council is setting your tax bill and water rates they can say "LOOK what the experts say". I don't know about about now, but in my day that was called "cover your ass."

If you should go to page 177 of this report, you will see it has a note that will tell you our municipality's infrastructure deficit is smaller than most other municipalities in Ontario; in fact, we are doing very well in that department. This can be attributed to councils and managements of the past as well as the present.

The section on mitigating funding deficits with tax increases and water increase over the next five years is verging on insanity. Along with assessment increase, which most of us have over the next few years, this does not seem possible and I would suggest it is not.

This report does have some interesting ways to help fund some of this expense which has to be considered - levels of service (LOS). The report, of course, says we should enhance them; but we could of course lower them and save costs. We could implement operational efficiencies, and we all see this is possible. This is not the end of it there are other assets not yet in this report that will be coming next year and added on.

All I can say is, we had better be looking for some other municipality to live in should this even be considered in its entirety. I was always in favour of being proactive, but this is a bit much, and we can only hope the council of the day will use a lot of common sense when it comes to this report.

John L Bolt
Port Stanley, ON

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